Missing Hiker On Mt. Evans Found Alive

Eric Chandler Was Hiking Mt. Evans, Mt. Bierstadt

A Mississippi man who disappeared while hiking in Clear Creek County earlier this week has been found alive and in relatively good condition, 7NEWS reported.

Robert "Eric" Chandler, 47, was spotted by a rescue helicopter a few miles south of Mt. Evans, directly south of Epaulet Mountain, said Steve Wilson with Alpine Rescue.

Search crews had already called off their search for the day when Chandler was spotted.

"We were already preparing for the next day's search patterns and the helicopter was actually sorta pre-flying one of those areas when they happened to spot him," Wilson said.

It is not known if Chandler was on a trail or if he had wandered off.

"The reports that we have so far is that he is in OK condition ... I'm sure he's cold, tired, wet, hungry -- all those thing you'd expect," said Wilson.

Chandler went hiking Wednesday morning between Mt. Evans and Mt. Bierstadt.

His family reported him missing early Thursday after he failed to return to his hotel room in Leadville. Searchers found his rental car parked on a hairpin curve at about 13,000 feet, on the road to the Mt. Evans summit.

Rescue teams were worried that he wouldn't be able to last long on the mountain.

"He's not from 14,000 feet, not acclimated to high altitude. There is less oxygen up here and that can affect you. Being hypothermic can affect you," Wilson had said earlier.

Sheriff's deputies located some maps in Chandler's motel room that provided clues to his possible route between the two mountains.

Some Alpine Rescue Team members spent Thursday night on Mt. Evans, in order to resume the search at first daylight and be near his car in case he returned.

"We've got about 60 personnel from five different rescue teams across the state looking for him," said Bill Barwick of Alpine Rescue on Friday.

Barwick said conditions on the mountain early Friday were "rough" with gusty winds, cold temperatures and some ice, but conditions improved later in the day.

Additional searchers were sent in toward Mt. Bierstadt from the Guanella Pass side, in case Chandler got turned around and decided to hike out that way.

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